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Superintendent's District Update - October 2017

Falls City Public Schools Superintendent’s District Update – October 2017

The Falls City Public Schools held its regular monthly meeting on Monday, October 9, 2017. Here are the highlights of the meeting.

High school teacher Mrs. Katy Gifford, and junior Josie Crofford presented information on the benefits of the Peers Always Learning (PALs) program at Falls City High. The PALs Program partners high school students with mentors and helps strengthen friendships and respect for others with different abilities. The program is in its seventh year and continues to grow stronger every year. The PALs Program was recently featured on Nebraska Public School Advantage http://www.nebraska-advantage.org/student-bodys-stewardship-pals-program-fosters-relationships-falls-city

The Board of Education also took action to appoint Kevin Scheitel to the School Board after the resignation of Board Member Scott Huppert was accepted back in September. Kevin Scheitel is a lifelong member of the community and will bring a valuable perspective to the District 56 Board of Education. 

Board Members Recognized - The Nebraska Association of School Boards (NASB), Board of Directors and staff, recognized the 2017 Award of Achievement recipients during the Nebraska City Region Meeting on Wednesday, October 4, 2017. John Martin Received the Level 7 Award and June Bowers was presented the Level 4 Award. John Martin and June Bowers were awarded for their participation in NASB Services and Programs as well as attendance at NASB workshops and events. Just as board members have made a commitment to provide a quality education for students in their districts, NASB strives to provide quality resources and opportunities for its members.  There are ten total levels of achievement that carry over year to year. Pictured are June Bowers, Linda Richardson, NASB President, and John Martin.

The Nebraska Rural Community Schools Association Southeast District meeting was held on October 4. Included on the NRCSA District meeting agenda was NRCSA’s efforts to partner in Nebraskans United for Property Tax Relief and Education. This is an effort that is working across education and ag groups regarding the issues of property tax and tax fairness, maintaining revenue to school districts, and state aid modernization. Below is the latest identification of priorities from Nebraskans United steering committee. 

Policy Priorities for Members of Nebraskans United:

1.     $1B in property tax relief for all property owners

·          Does not create a revenue shortfall for the state or school districts

·          Ideally progressive for taxpayers

·          Ideally weighted toward ag

2.     Increase state funding for K-12 Schools

·          Restore recent TEEOSA cuts

·          Preserve TEEOSA funding (incl. making up lost federal funding if necessary)

·          Increase level of state support state funding for K-12 schools

·          Aid should be stable, both at the state and district level

The District 56 Strategic Plan was reviewed by the BOE, and outlined the district’s goal for addressing mental and behavioral health challenges as they relate to the specific needs of children and families in our school community. With this in mind, planning is underway with local agencies coming together in a partnership to support the implementation of increased mental health resources and knowledge necessary to carry out the specific responsibilities and activities addressing the needs of children birth through age 21 in our school district. 

Furthermore, preliminary meetings are occurring as the School District continues the discussion on future facility improvements at the high school campus. A general cost-analysis and timeline for facility improvements will be available for review in the coming months as a more formal plan becomes reality. The facility improvements under consideration include addressing the band and choir rooms, and the welding and carpentry classroom areas.

The FCPS Education Foundation met on September 22 and reappointed Melvin Harmon as the President, Ed Harris Vice President, and Merle Veigel, Treasurer. The Foundation reviewed information on amounts received to date in 2017 for various purposes and discussed the new Margaret Goldsmith Rice Scholarship and Resolution. The Foundation also reviewed annuities and CD’s currently held. The next Foundation meeting will be in February, 2018.

The District 56 Board of Education acted on two items before concluding the regular meeting. 

1) Approved on First Reading Policy Revisions:  1) 6318 Employee Conduct and Appearance; 2) 6319 Professional Boundaries Between Employees and Students; 3) 7110 Admission; 4) 7137 Student Health and Immunization Checkup; 5) 7112 Work Permits 

2)   Approved the appointment of Kevin Scheitel as District 56 School Board Member.

The next regular monthly Board of Education meeting is scheduled for November 13, 2017, at 7:00 P.M. in the Central Office in Falls City Middle School. Regular and special meeting agendas are kept in the Office of the Superintendent, Tim Heckenlively.